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Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Rhythm of the Season - Autumn

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.

~John Muir

Autumn has found its way to Pennsylvania this week. The brisk wind blows colorful leaves off the limb and in swirls before touching the ground as we gaze in wonder on our weekend hikes. Summertime with two young boys is a fun outgoing season, kind of like a big long party of outdoor play, boisterous and energetic. Now, with the onset of autumn our rhythm changes to one in which we draw close, contract if you will, prepare for colder days ahead, and we move more slowly and purposefully. Even our times outdoors are more quiet as we hush our voices to listen to the leaves crunch beneath our feet.

In our home we bring the outdoors in with harvest decorations, thanks to my mother who has always encouraged our family to celebrate the change of the season.

We prepare for our Tree of Thanksgiving found at Rhythm of the Home. And make a leaf-matching game of native trees and how their leaves look in spring and autumn.

The harvest is collected.

The pumpkins are picked.

Now it is time to enjoy the grand finale of nature's colorful show of leaves before we settle in for winter's beauty.

Friday, October 7, 2011

This Moment

A Friday ritual inspired by Soulemama. A single photo. A moment to treasure.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wandering in the Woods

One mile from our home is a park with extensive, unmarked, rarely-traveled wooded trails that we love to explore. Typically, we go on the main path, then cut off on one or two more trails. Any more divergence off the main trail and I am convinced we would be lost. With the three year old in tow, "lost" is not a feeling I want to experience!

One day a few weeks ago, I saw a card from the game/book
The Dangerous Book For Boys. It had a drawing of an arrow made out of 3 sticks, and it struck me... that is our ticket to hiking freedom... stick arrows. Now when we take a turn off a path we mark the path we are leaving with a stick arrow so we can find it on our way back. (Hansel and Gretel's fate will not be our own.)

The children can lead the hike wherever they chose. Unlimited adventure is around every bend. The return trip has turned into a game for little Shane... "Who can spot the arrow first & which way do we go?"

Sometimes they are big and easy to spot on a main trail.

Some tell us which way to turn at a Y.

Others are small and lead to a barely noticeable trail.

I have a feeling the boys will hear, "Get your hiking shoes on!" a lot this autumn...
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